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SEN Law & Guidance

SEN Law & Guidance


Below you can find Special Educational Needs Law & Guidance which Education Providers are expected to adhere to. 


SEND Code of Practice

The SEND Code of Practice ("COP") is statutory guidance for organisations that work with and support children and young people with special educational needs and disabilities. It sets out duties, policies and procedures relating to Part 3 of the Children and Families Act 2014 and associated regulations, and it applies to all organisations that fit the above criteria in England.
All professionals working with special needs children must have regard to the Code of Practice. This means that whenever they are making decisions they must give consideration to what the Code says. They cannot ignore it. 

They must fulfil their statutory duties towards children and young people with SEN or disabilities in the light of the guidance set out in it. They must be able to demonstrate in their arrangements for children and young people with SEN or disabilities that they are fulfilling their statutory duty to have regard to the Code. So, where the text uses the word ‘should’ it means that the guidance contained in this Code must be considered and that those who must have regard to it will be expected to explain any departure from it.

To view the SEND Code of Practice, please click the following link:



SEND Regulations 2014

These regulations came into force September 2014. To view the SEND Regulations, please click on the following link: 



Children & Families Act 2014 (CAFA)

An Act that must be followed to make provision about children, families, and people with special educational needs or disabilities; to make provision about the right to request flexible working; and for connected purposes.
To view the Children & Families Act 2014 (CAFA), please click on the following link: 



Exclusion from Maintained Schools, Academies and Pupil Referral Units in England

This document from the Department for Education (DfE) provides a guide to the legislation that governs the exclusion of pupils from maintained schools, pupil referral units (PRUs), academy schools (including free schools, studio schools and university technology colleges) and alternative provision academies (including alternative provision free schools) in England. 

To view this document, please click on the following link:



Ensuring a good education for children who cannot attend school because of health needs - Statutory guidance for local authorities - January 2013

This statutory guidance (link below) is for local authorities and departmental advice for others ensuring children with health needs receive education.

It applies to:

  • Mainstream schools
  • Academies and free schools
  • Independent schools
  • Special schools
  • Where a child is not on the roll of a school.

Local authorities must follow this guidance when carrying out their duty to arrange suitable full-time education (or part-time when appropriate for the child’s needs) for children who are unable to attend a mainstream or special school because of their health.
The guidance applies equally whether a child cannot attend school at all or can only attend intermittently.

This can be read as departmental advice by all those supporting the educational attainment of a child with health needs, including:

  • All types of schools
  • Providers of alternative provision
  • Parents
  • Providers of health services.

To view this guidance, please click on the following link:


Equality Act 2010 (EqA)

An Act to make provision to require Ministers of the Crown and others when making strategic decisions about the exercise of their functions to have regard to the desirability of reducing socio-economic inequalities; to reform and harmonise equality law and restate the greater part of the enactments relating to discrimination and harassment related to certain personal characteristics; to enable certain employers to be required to publish information about the differences in pay between male and female employees; to prohibit victimisation in certain circumstances; to require the exercise of certain functions to be with regard to the need to eliminate discrimination and other prohibited conduct; to enable duties to be imposed in relation to the exercise of public procurement functions; to increase equality of opportunity; to amend the law relating to rights and responsibilities in family relationships; and for connected purposes.

To view the Equality Act 2010 (EqA), please click on the following link: 



Education Act 1996 (EA)

An Act to consolidate the Education Act 1944 and certain other enactments relating to education, with amendments to give effect to recommendations of the Law Commission.

To view the Education Act (EA), please click on the following link: